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Join us for a riveting LIVE episode of Speak Up with Anthony Scaramucci, featuring the insight of Hitha Herzog, a prominent Retail Analyst and Financial Expert. As we dive into the economic trends shaping 2024, this episode promises to be a treasure trove of information for anyone keen on understanding the evolving financial landscape.

About Our Guest: Hitha Herzog, the Chief Research Officer at H Squared Research LLC, brings a wealth of knowledge from her experience in the retail industry. As a former Forbes reporter and a current columnist at US News & World Report, Herzog is well-equipped to offer nuanced perspectives on consumer spending and market trends. Hitha is the author of “Black Market Billions: How Organized Retail Crime Funds Terrorists.”

Key Topics:

  • An in-depth look at the latest Jobs Report and what it means as we approach 2024.
  • Insights into consumer sentiment with only 17 days until Christmas, a critical period for retail.
  • Understanding the impact of rising consumer debt, as major financial institutions like Citi, Wells Fargo, and JP Morgan Chase reported.
  • An investor’s take on the earnings of companies like Lululemon, the challenges facing Starbucks, and whether McDonald’s new strategies will shift market dynamics.


Anthony Scaramucci 0:08
All right, well welcome welcome with speak up with Anthony Scaramucci. Welcome to speak up with Anthony Scaramucci have an amazing guest and a dear friend today. But I just want to remind everybody you can call into this show. It’s nine to eight, the mooch so it’s 928-436-6624 and I want to welcome Hitha Herzog. I think the first time I met he that was on a Fox Business panel. I think we were on Maria Bartiromo show together. It’s probably five years ago, right after I got fired from the White House. I think if I remember correctly, and you are an author, you wrote black market billions about retail threat theft in our society. You’ve worked for us news, you worked for Forbes. And you now have a fantastic company called H Square Research, where you’re dedicated to all things retail. So welcome to the show. What did I miss Hitha?

Hitha Herzog 1:06
Oh, man, you nailed it. And I think we actually met prior to you being at the White House. I think we actually met on Charles Payne show and 2015 2015 show when we were doing making money, and we all became good friends from that experience.

Anthony Scaramucci 1:25
He’s a great guy, by the way. I haven’t seen him. Yeah, Neil Cavuto are two great guys. But you are also a very special person. So give us an update. What are you working on? On tell us about H Squared Research?

Hitha Herzog 1:38
Well, my research company really focuses in on retail research, but it’s white label research for registered investment advisors. So a lot of investment advisors may have, you know, assets under management of under 500 million. And shockingly, they don’t have marketing departments to get that research out. So they call me to do white label and bespoke research for them. And in addition to that, I’m a Senior Fellow of a think tank called Data catalyst Institute out of Washington. And we do a lot of research on small business, both urban small businesses and rural small businesses. And we just came out with a study actually, we came out with about a year ago called super sellers. And that’s where that in addition to my company, and then being on air, and then being a mom of twins, it’s just a lot. Someone wanted me to write the sequel to black market billions. And they said, with what time were please find me some time to go ahead and write a book. I don’t have a ghostwriter. It’s me, like other more hours in the day that I’m gonna go ahead and write a book. I don’t know.

Anthony Scaramucci 2:45
I mean, this is the reason why I wanted to have you on because you’re doing a lot of different things. And so you have this sort of bandwidth of experience. Let’s start with small businesses in America. So I’m a Wall Streeters. So Wall Streeters invariably get everything wrong. We say the markets going higher when it’s about the crash. We say the market is going through the floor when that booms I thought the economy was going to be way slower than it currently is. Got it wrong. I thought the Fed was going to end the rate cycle raises last quarter got it wrong. So tell me what’s going on in small businesses. And tell me why the economy is so resilient.

Hitha Herzog 3:26
I think there’s a couple things that are going on Anthony. And I think one thing that we’re not really talking about enough is how much money people are putting on their credit cards. I know this is very simple. But if you do a comparable of the earnings to major banks, like Wells Fargo, and Citi, and you know, JP Morgan Chase, if you look back at what the CFOs were saying, on the earnings calls, they were saying that a lot of the consumer, you know, the balances that people are holding on their credit cards is increasing. And it’s really kind of a big portion of what was driving the revenues for those quarterly earnings. So if you think about that, and you think about, well, you know, no one had anticipated the economy to be, you know, moving at the pace that it was moving at, where we really just looking at what people were putting on the credit cards as well, because access to credit is not like what it was 10 years ago, even five years ago, credit markets are really easier and was easy, but it’s easier to access or increase your credit lines of credit. And I think there’s a lot of FOMO spending that’s going on with that said,

Anthony Scaramucci 4:34
Is this a sugar high then? I mean, so. You tries a lot. Yeah. So So we ended up with lots of credit card debt over the next 24 months. And then people panicked in terms of being able to pay for that, or do you think that their wages will keep track and they’ll be able to manage the credit card debt?

Hitha Herzog 4:56
Well, we saw the labor numbers right And it was saying that actually wages are increasing. So if that trajectory continues, then maybe, you know, I want to be hopeful. And I want to say, Come January, February, when everyone gets their credit card statements, people are going to be able to hopefully feel better to pay those balances off in full, what ends up getting really suspect is when the Federal Reserve, you know, the the Fed increases the interest rate, or the rate goes up, right, that has an impact on the consumer and credit card rates. And then people aren’t able to pay back those balances in full and people are carrying those balances. So I saw a statistic that basically said that people are still paying off their balances from last Christmas. That’s not good. That’s really, really not good. And I think, if so if we if that continues, if that’s a trend that continues, and again, I want to be hopeful, I try to be poly positive on all these things, I want to say, Oh, yes, people are gonna feel better, they’re gonna be able to pay off their, their, their credit cards in full job market is looking better labor markets looking better, especially in healthcare. You know, that’s beefing up, that people are going to just pay those off. But I, you know, I think the the, you know, the realist in Me thinks that’s actually not going to happen, and you’re gonna see those balances carried over.

Anthony Scaramucci 6:17
Well, I mean, it’s a vicious cycle for somebody who’s a consumer, because you know, you may need something we also know that the savings rate isn’t where we want it to be. And so sometimes people frankly, put credit card debt on for emergencies or necessities and they get caught behind the eight ball because the rates are ridiculously high. And, and they start out with minimum payments or slightly more than minimum payments. And before you know, they’re, they’re sitting there with bone crushing debt. So you you are Polly positive, I love that word by him, likely to steal that from you, at some point, take it, what would you say? You’re probably positive? What would you be worried about not to be poly negative, but what would you be worried about? For the consumer or for the economy? For the stock market?

Hitha Herzog 7:06
Yeah, so Negative Nelly is going to come out now. So what I’m nervous about is that fact that people to your point, you know, in the past, people would just use your credit cards to emergency spend, right? Oh, my gosh, I broke my leg, I don’t have insurance, I gotta put up my credit card, or someone lost the tooth, or God forbid, someone got into an accident, right? What people are doing now Anthony is FOMO spending, right fear of missing out. So what we’re seeing from the consumer side, and then we’re going to talk about small business in a second because that’s actually a very interesting, Polly positive story, right? The consumer is not necessarily spending on clothing and items, but they’re, they’re spending on experiences. And of course, they’re going to do this on my Instagram feed, or people in, you know, Santorini all summer long in Greece, me while I’m sitting here with the kids like worrying about how I’m going to pay for summer camp in New York City, like, oh, my gosh, it’s so expensive here, right. So of course, you are feeling that FOMO. And people you know, access to credit, they put it on their credit cards, holidays are coming up, people are still kind of feeling the ripple effect of not being able to spend so much during the pandemic or being fearful of spending. So they’re just FOMO spending on those cards. It’s all about mass consumption. That’s all we heard during Black Friday, spend more on the E commerce sites, you know, ads are coming at you. So that’s what makes me nervous is that FOMO spend? Do people really understand that they’re not probably going to have to, they’re not gonna be able to pay that back unless their wages increased to a specific point and their savings rate gets higher. And those two things aren’t happening at the pace that I would like it to, to, to to go at for those balances to be paid off in full and people want to actionable

Anthony Scaramucci 8:55
what’s actionable for investors then either?

Hitha Herzog 8:59
Well, couple things, I think investors should definitely start looking at those bank stocks. I think we’ve always said that, right. I think, you know, banks are certainly making their, you know, when I, it was shocking to me, because usually when I do my retail analysis, you know, you look at what people are spending on credit cards, and you know, but I don’t really dig so much into the earnings of the banks. And when I started to do that, I really saw this symbiotic relationship of what the banks were earning, and then what you know, obviously, how the consumer was doing and then how that was going to impact the retail stocks. So when you you have to look at those in tandem with each other. And if I think the you know, if I’m if I’m not mistaken, I you know, I don’t want to misspeak here, but I think the forecast is that we’re going to continue to see that revenue spike on those credit card balances for those three stocks that I had mentioned, Wells Fargo, Citi and JP Morgan into the next quarter. So from an investment standpoint, Yeah, I would certainly have that in the back of my mind, especially if you’re looking at the retail side. Now from the retail perspective, I mean, there’s one Gangbuster stock that continues to go nuts. And that’s Shopify. I mean, if it did you see what what Harley did during Black Friday at the sphere in Las Vegas? And I don’t know if you follow him on Twitter, or if you saw pictures of this.

Anthony Scaramucci 10:26
I didn’t see it. But obviously, I’m well versed in this sphere, you know, my kids are dying for me to take out an ad on the sphere. I looked at the pricing, I almost fell over.

Hitha Herzog 10:37
Okay, I have a hunch about this. No, I’m looking you up. We’re gonna talk offline about those regarding the sphere. But just to give everyone an explanation of what Harley This is the CEO of Shopify, what he did, he took the sphere, and then in real time, had shot had Black Friday sales around the world, literally, the sphere was the world. And if you looked at the sphere, it was like the Santa Tracker, like NORAD Santa Tracker, all weekend, long during Black Friday, you were able to see the numbers of Black Friday, from Shopify vendors, how much they were making, all weekend long, it was the best marketing it was so bananas, it was so telling of how much FOMO spend was going on? And how much money Shopify was making, just being the platform for these DTC and E commerce brands. So I think it’s less about you know, yes, retail is for the most part healthy. I mean, yes, you have these outliers, like some of the department stores and the debt that they are carrying, and how that’s gonna get slammed if the if the Fed increases interest rates. But I think we have to dig a little bit deeper. And you know, Charles Payne was the one that taught me this is to look at things like Shopify, for example. And, you know, companies that are kind of basically creating the ripple effect and retail.

Anthony Scaramucci 12:02
You know, it’s interesting, I see these companies, the way I see the news media and the way I see you and me in Speak Up with Anthony Scaramucci, because you’ve got the traditional media out there, they’re only going to tell you a certain thing, and they’re only going to dig at a certain depth, and they certainly don’t have interaction, like we’d like to have with the people that are viewing us. And so Shopify, sort of like that, in my mind, it’s sort of this. I don’t want to say underground, but it’s sort of like a different element to traditional shopping even even different from Amazon 17 days to go. Okay, the panic light is on in the Scaramucci house. Okay. Because let’s face it, let’s face it, we are Sandra’s helpers. And right now, we’re not making enough toys here in our little toy factory. So we are panicked. Tell me about the consumer and the vibe of the consumer heading into Christmas 17 days to go.

Hitha Herzog 12:59
Well, we got to talk about it. It’s that FOMO effect, right. And I think that I think the consumer maybe has a all sense,

Anthony Scaramucci 13:09
you can be FOMO and anxious, or you can be FOMO. And pumped. You know what I mean? If you haven’t a great year, people have a tendency to flourish, exactly where you think we are. I

Hitha Herzog 13:19
think for the most part, I think there’s FOMO and pumped but maybe pumped for the wrong reasons. I think they’re pumped because they have access to credit. And it’s making them feel richer than they really are. I don’t think they’re really thinking about what’s going to come January and February when they open up those credit card statements. But with that said, I feel like we’re gonna see a real significant spike in spending. As we get closer to Christmas. We know we’re in the midst of Hanukkah right now. So I hear you on the panic. I bought all the Hanukkah presents for the for my girls last week. Thankfully, they’re all They’re all

Anthony Scaramucci 13:55
Happy Hannukah by the way

Hitha Herzog 13:58
thank you so much.

Anthony Scaramucci 14:00
But you have a you have a very smart bank. So Citi wells, Fargo, JP Morgan, all reporting what you’re saying that the consumers are carrying more debt. And they’re smart banks, and they have decent underwriting standards here. How much of a loss factor? Are they building it because they’re washing the country with capital, they’re extending lots of liquidity to people. And they know that a group of those people are just never going to be able to pay back? What they’re extending. So what what are those numbers look like?

Hitha Herzog 14:32
I mean, if you’re basing it based on if you’re looking at it based on what happened during the last recession, I think the banks really stumbled because of that exact fact. I think I would think that for this time around, they’re probably baked it into the numbers that there is going to be defaults on those credit cards, you know, into the second and third quarter and I think that’s why we were seeing the forecasts come in as high as they did. When they reported out earnings last quarter, with that said, you know, I don’t know, you know, I don’t know, to what degree people are going to be defaulting on those credit cards or, you know, unable to pay back or carrying those balances. Again, I don’t want to, you know, be so negative, but my gut feeling is that it’s going to be a lot larger than what the banks are anticipating, I truly don’t think the consumer realizes how much is at stake, how much they’re actually carrying. It’s, it’s, it’s, it’s going to be, you know, it’s going to be an issue.

Anthony Scaramucci 15:32
So you could see, you know, second and third quarter loss reserves for the bank. I mean, this is something, obviously, that we have to look at more carefully.

Hitha Herzog 15:41
We’re not even talking. I mean, you know, and this is like, if everything stays normal, I mean, you know, we’ve like, Who would have ever predicted in 2020, that a global pandemic would have just gripped the entire, you know, planet Earth, and we would have all been at a standstill, you know,

Anthony Scaramucci 15:57
We, we not only didn’t predict it all and completely embarrass myself, I walked out of a meeting with two world economic health organization, officials, not world economic but who officials, it was late January of 2020. I told my team, this is completely overblown, this is going to be like SARS, in 2003. So we got roasted, in March of 2020, for not anticipating the depth of the pandemic. Having said that, I think that we could be on the right side of our guesstimate on inflation. I feel like the inflation numbers are going to come down faster than the street is anticipating we’ll have to see about that. But right investor perspective, we’ve had Lulu or Lou lemons earnings out, we’ve got Starbucks, I want to ask you why Starbucks can’t seem to get it together. What do you think of McDonald’s as an example, they have this new concept called Cosmic which they are obviously going head on with Starbucks with that customer, Lulu Lemon. What’s your opinion there?

Hitha Herzog 17:09
I think Lululemon the new CEO, while I think he looks I don’t know if you’ve read the New York Times feature on him that came out a couple months ago. He is really like the, you know, if you’re gonna put down on paper, what a typical, like, stellar alpha male CEO that goes running at four in the morning, 70 miles before he starts his day. Like he is that guy. And I think that type of energy just isn’t necessarily transferring to what Lululemon is

Anthony Scaramucci 17:40
doing you feel bad because I’m really not that guy, you know? The donut bit best thing that can always donuts, please

Hitha Herzog 17:47
I read that article. And I was like, I’m so excited because I’m a runner. I’m like, I’m so excited that his wife is letting him go and run 17 miles before he starts his day. I wish my husband would let me do that, but that’s just not gonna happen. So So I think the specifically, there was a real focus on menswear in Lululemon. And really, you know, they have that acquisition of mirror. I think they really wanted to create a lifestyle around Lululemon. But the core of that business is women’s yoga pants, you know, young, teenage, you know, teenagers, you know, kids in middle school, want those yoga pants, and I think they are failing to identify that that is their core audience and they aren’t specifically marketing towards that. You know, everyone knows the men’s yoga pants are great, you know, I don’t think he needs to just hit that over the head so hard, but I think they’re losing who their core customer is and they’re not marketing sufficiently to that.

Anthony Scaramucci 18:41
Okay, and it just a quick couple of thoughts on Starbucks and McDonald’s Yeah.

Hitha Herzog 18:46
Anthony What was the last time you were in a Starbucks

Anthony Scaramucci 18:50
I’m a Starbucks addict so don’t go by me i You know what I do is I got the mobile app on my way into the city I get myself an iced coffee

Hitha Herzog 18:57
Maybe you’re the outlier because I never go into Starbucks I think it’s the worst customer experience ever. They still can get my name right. The only time a Starbucks gets my name right.

Anthony Scaramucci 19:07
My God the pastries are terrible. The aches that they put on the you know, the microwave tastes like plastic. I mean, you know the coffee’s okay, if you traveled to Europe, you know, the coffee is absolutely terrible, but compared to other terrible coffee in America, the coffee is okay. But but the that was a hot store 20 years ago, it’s no longer hot. It’s not fresh.

Hitha Herzog 19:31
It was it’s not only and I think also, they last kind of what you go to Starbucks for. I mean, I live on the Upper West Side, the Starbucks here. We my husband, I were talking about it. It’s really synonymous of with holidays and gathering. I don’t know why the Starbucks kills it every holiday season. We walked by there. No one’s in there. It just I think there was a lot of, you know, between the labor issues, you know, they brought in Howard Schultz to try to like quell what’s going on there, but I think in this in this, you know, like transition and trying to figure out what was going on there. Again, they also lost what the core appeal of Starbucks is. Yes. You know, they have fancy drinks, and it’s very cool. But on the marketing side, it’s no longer do you remember back in 2020? Or no, excuse me, 22,002, you would see Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen walk around with their Starbucks mugs. And it was, you know, kind of us, you know, us, us new nap US News and World Report, but US Weekly fodder, right? The marketing aspect of Starbucks, it’s no longer you know, no one really wants to go there anymore. And it’s so easy just to get good coffee everywhere else. You know, and, and honestly, you know, from a market share standpoint, that is why, you know, this cosmic that’s coming out of, of McDonald’s, McDonald’s is recognizing that here is, you know, whitespace in market share, they are realizing that this is the ability to kind of take that, I see, we’re getting some ASCII we’re seeing, are we getting some questions? Or?

Anthony Scaramucci 21:00
Yeah, we’re gonna get some questions here in a second, we’re going to, we’re going to switch over to what I call Moochie. University. I love that and, and our topic today is about debt. And so since we were talking about debt, I’m going to give my two cents on debt. And if you’re cool with that, I’d love to have you chime in. But what I what I tell our viewers and listeners is, there’s two types of debt to me. One is a good form of debt. And that is debt that’s coupled with investment. As an example, if you’re going to buy a house, and I’m taking on a 30 year mortgage, and I know that I have enough income to pay for that mortgage, and I can defeat the principal of that mortgage down over time and build equity for myself, I would much rather see people do that and get into a rental habit, where they’re in a nice rental, but they’re not building any equity for themselves. So that’s a good form of debt. A bad form of debt, unfortunately, is sort of the stuff that we’re talking about where you’re taking on debt, you’ve got a 15 to 25% credit card rate, depending on where you live. And depending on what the banks can get away with. And that is sort of that sugar, high sugar rush debt. And I think you know, this about me, most people do, I started with absolutely nothing. One of the big debts that I took on, which I would say was good debt, it’s more controversial today is student debt. And so I had to borrow money to go to undergrad, I borrowed money to go to law school. Have it again, that was good debt, because it was capital investing debt. And so when we, when we talk about debt in our society, I just want people to think, not to be scared, there’s good debt. And then there’s that sort of sugar high bed debt. What are your thoughts there? He thought before I switch over to taking on questions.

Hitha Herzog 22:46
Yeah, I think you’re absolutely right. And I think also, I think the individual needs to assess what, and be honest with themselves, what the good debt looks like for them. And if they can actually take that on, and so it doesn’t turn into bad debt. I think the problem, especially with student loans, is that, you know, young people don’t really maybe they don’t have the maturity I certainly didn’t, when I took on a student loan and realize that, you know, 15 years later, I’m paying back my grad school loan for journalism, no offense to media, love you all out there. But you know, if you want to pay off a, you know, I have a $35,000 loan it took me forever to pay that off. And it just, you know, I think people need to be honest with themselves so that that good debt doesn’t turn into a monstrous debt that they are suddenly getting into this like Hyperloop of like I’m paying off interest now at this point.

Anthony Scaramucci 23:45
You know, I had a really cool graphic that we were going to run before we started this conversation. You guys want to run the graphic for me is that cool? I know it’s a little bit of a

about the graphic is like a magnet, pulling into the mooch or the Mooch U anyway, it’s a little horrifying but my children are getting mooch you t shirts and sweatshirts for Christmas. Okay, that’s just they don’t know that but I know that and of course I probably will force them to wear it you know, some type of denture and servitude. Alright, let’s go to questions. And it is wonderful to see you by the way. Congratulations on your beautiful family.

Hitha Herzog 24:28
Thank you so much. It’s it’s always fun seeing you too. This is this is awesome. I love this. Okay,

Anthony Scaramucci 24:33
let’s go to the Why won’t the low unemployment rate and aggressive fed ACTION Keep the next recession? relatively mild? Okay, this is from Euston from Arizona via email whether you want to want to go one at that first. Why

Hitha Herzog 24:50
won’t the lowest unemployment rate and aggressive fed

Anthony Scaramucci 24:54
action and the next recession relatively mild?

Hitha Herzog 24:57
Why won’t it It might. I mean, I guess I mean, you know, I hate to keep going back to this, like these the, you know, credit and debt. But I think it comes down to debt. I think that is what, you know, if, if the Fed continues to increase the interest rate, it won’t. I mean, you have to have that sort of, I hate this term, but that perfect sort of storm, not even a storm, but this perfect sort of balance of wages getting higher, and people being able to pay off those balances.

Anthony Scaramucci 25:36
Yeah. And eventually the Fed getting ahead of the curve, I think, I think, exactly. I think that’s the big issue. And so I think I would say that could happen. I mean, this is the thing about investing, and this gets everybody upset. And this is why every FA is a victim when bad things are going on, because people want to blame somebody, right. And a lot of it is really situational. But there is a Venn diagram of things that can happen used. And one of those things is the low unemployment number and perfect Mama Bear fed action keeps our next recession, very mild. And that would be a miracle, it’d be a home run. That’s one quadrant, there’s probably a 30 35% chance that can happen. But what typically does happen is that thing we have to be worried about is once a recession starts, it gets way worse way quickly. And I’ll just give a very quick example. In July of 2007. Mr. Bernanke, Chairman Bernanke, Federal Reserve Chairman said, Hey, this subprime problem is about a $90 billion problem. It’s a very small problem on a relative basis. And so if necessary, we’ll ring fence and contain it. But they didn’t move quickly enough. And it snowballed into a $6 trillion problem, because once everybody freezes their consumption, right sort of causes this trapdoor in the economy. But I certainly hope that Euston is right. And I got that on the table as one of the potential outcomes. We have a caller. Janet coming in from Texas, Janet, welcome to speak up.

Janet 27:17

Anthony Scaramucci 27:19
Hey, can you hear us Janet? What’s your question?

Janet 27:23
Yes. Hold on, hold on. I’m wondering if I’m online all the time. Well, I’m 71. But I’m, I love information. And I just wish we’d had the internet when I was younger shoot people. But it really it really makes a person wonder if when you see the Feds as one thing. And of course, we know that we know our credit card debt is up the national debt is up. If you want to polish your crystal ball here a minute, what they all want to go out on a limb and say, when when do you think there’s going to be something like a depression? Or do you think there’s going to be or are we going to continue? I mean, the jobs, the people that I met Well, of course, I’m in Austin, it’s giant software capital. And a lot of my younger friends, they tend to be software engineers and buying real estate with their money and stuff like that. And I have to tell you that they’re raising chickens, they’re, they’re gardening in their backyard. They’re kind of they’re going retro in a lot of ways, and really not buying Tesla’s not going to Starbucks every day, and things like that. So I’m seeing a real dichotomy between what you see and you know, what you see in the news that some of the mainstream news wants to say, well, we have plenty of jobs, and then other people. Look, a lot of YouTubers are pointing out, yes, but if you have the people who have given up or haven’t recently applied for unemployment aren’t counted anymore. And a lot of people are underemployed and a lot of people if they have two jobs, apparently they count them twice. So it’s kind of a Orwellian financial picture that we have right now. What what they all think is is the thing to believe and of course, you have the gold bugs and all that but she can afford gold.

Anthony Scaramucci 29:31
Think the general question is about the that trapdoor falling out and whether or not there’s a potentiality for depression, so I’ll start and I’ll ask Ethan to jump in as well. I never want to rule out a catastrophe certainly think that bad things can happen. You get a combination of a death spiral and a war or a combination of those things. But what typically has happened is there’s a general resiliency In the American economy, and we usually get ourselves bailed out by great technology, things happen that prove our productivity, they lower costs, you know, we were buying flat screen TVs 15 or 20 years ago, for six or $7,000. We’re buying that TV, and it’s a way better TV for $600. He thought what would you say to Janet?

Hitha Herzog 30:25
I think what? Yeah,

Janet 30:27
Thank you for your thank you for your, your common sense. And your and, and your, your optimism, I think in this country, you know, we went to 90 and 18, we went through the 40s. And, and I was born in 52. And my mother at that time was 41. So she’s, she grew up in a farm in Minnesota, and men would come by, you know, that’s where that term tramp, you know, they’d become tramping on the road and, and they’d load them up with food and keep them going until they got to the next town to try to find work. And I think Americans are so resilient. When I look at my own ancestors and, and things I’m doing now I’m living while I’m a disabled veteran, I’m living on that. But if you cook at home, like instead of going to Starbucks, I get some Hershey’s natural cocoa and I mix it with cane sugar and, and molasses, and make my own brown sugar. And then you mix the cocoa and the brown sugar, you put a little water in, you cook it and you get the world’s best. Mocha syrup. It’s very rich. It’s

Hitha Herzog 31:35
time in here. Janet, I want to chime in here and just say I love the fact that you think Anthony and I are young people that makes me so happy. I mean, Anthony is definitely young person.

Anthony Scaramucci 31:47
I’m turning 60 So I don’t think anybody thinks I’m young anymore. Thank you. Thank you, Janet. Any other callers on the line asking my producer Mike

if there are no other callers the the don’t be shy or bashful. It’s nine to the mooch 928-436-6624. But before we wrap Heath up, what are you doing for Christmas? Tell me your plans, Christmas Hanukkah, New Years. What’s your holiday game plan?

Hitha Herzog 32:25
Well, we always do the same thing, which is, we’re here in we usually go to New Mexico, where I’m from my mom lives there. But we’re gonna stay here in the city. Our friends have a Christmas Eve party. And then we go to Philadelphia after Christmas. I know it sounds silly. I don’t have family in Philadelphia. Seth does not have family in Philadelphia. He’s from Princeton. But we go and have a three day vacation at this beautiful hotel that exists there. And you know, we save all of our money. And then we go and take the girls are because there’s a there’s a there’s a there’s a pool of 59 stories up in the sky that the kids like to like to swim in. Yeah,

Anthony Scaramucci 33:09
I love the idea of love the creativity, I think we have one more color. And then obviously, we’ll wrap the show for this week. Anybody else calling in?

Hitha Herzog 33:23
You didn’t tell me what you were doing. But maybe we can talk about it after

Anthony Scaramucci 33:26
I go skiing. And so I’m going to be up in Windham. I have a small place up there and take the kids. We’ve got Andrew on from Massachusetts, Andrew.

Andrew 33:40
Anthony, first of all, I love your show and your perspective on the world. I think it’s great. It’s forthright. And and. And that’s great to see in today’s media world. The question I have is how do you how do you reconcile the apparent dichotomy or difference between consumer sentiment? And I have to say the polls are not necessarily reliable, but we’re consumers are kind of negative on the world. Or politically negative actually, this gets into politics. Actually, I don’t know if we want to go there. But how do you explain the difference between people’s view of you know how terrible everything is with the fact that our GDP is at a record rate or inflation is down from nine to 3%? Employment is real wages are increasing, etc, etc. How do you explain that difference?

Anthony Scaramucci 34:31
You want to take a shot first, so

Hitha Herzog 34:33
you want me to go force? Consumer sentiment? You’re absolutely right. It doesn’t sometimes the numbers don’t make sense, you know, you have this high consumer sentiment or consumer sentiment is is you know, increasing yet the economy. The numbers are kind of showing that, you know, nothing was really, you know, feeling good or looking good, or the Outlook doesn’t look good. And I think it just again, I think this is a theme that’s been running through this entire episode, but it’s that false sense. As of everything is okay, because of access to credit. And it kind of comes back to that always. When you when consumers feel like wages are increasing, unemployment is coming down, but then they have this access to credit. That makes them feel a little bit better, despite what the macro numbers are saying.

Andrew 35:26
Yeah, I guess that’s that’s my point is apparently the polls, at least the political polls have many people, you know, not too happy about the President’s performance when the statistics if you just look at cold statistics in terms of employment or economic growth, they’re pretty astonishing. I mean, we came out of this disastrous period, early 2020. Pretty well, actually. So I’m just trying to understand,

Anthony Scaramucci 35:51
you know, yes, pricing.

Andrew 35:55
Just watched things. All right. And what I see is I see a lot of, I see restaurants filled, I see parking lots filled. And that’s despite the fact that I don’t even do any shopping in stores anymore. It’s just on Amazon. But

Anthony Scaramucci 36:09
it looks to me like things are pretty vibrant. Yeah. Prices are data to 97 out here on Long Island. So I, I hear you on that as well. Andrew, I guess what I’ll just say quickly, because unfortunately have to wrap the show is that there’s time before the election. And I think as the litigation of that election takes place, whoever the eventual nominees are, it looks like it could be president, the two presidents President Brian and President Trump, I think there’ll be a litigation of this economic data. And it’ll probably be favorable for the Democrats. If this data keeps up. We don’t slip into a recession in 2024. And by the way, the odds of us slipping into a recession during a presidential year are low. And you guys may know this, but it’s worth repeating. The stock market goes up 83% of the time, during a presidential year. So it’s just something to think about. I’m sorry that we have to go but I really appreciate you calling in Andrew. My friend Heath. I hope to see you soon. I’m not going to see you in Philadelphia in that 50 story, swimming pool. Have a please tell Seth I say hi. Congratulations on everything. And guys, thank you again for joining us on speak up with Anthony Scaramucci. And we’ll be back to you guys next week. Same time same bat channel.


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